*You could also use an equivalent amount of ham hocks. Add to the soup whole, then chop at the end.
If you use a ham steak, chop before adding to the soup, but be sure to add all of it, including the bone. Don't trim the fat. That's where much of the flavor comes from.
^^UPDATE 2017^^ I made this again a few weeks ago and didn't bother chopping my ham steak before throwing it in the crock pot. I just tossed it in, then removed it after slow cooking, shredded it with 2 forks, and put it back in. I like the texture of the meat better this way, but either way will work great!